MERRYN'S JOURNEY by Brian Hastings


Age Range: 6 - 8
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In this video game spinoff, a fisherman’s daughter builds a submarine and sets out to find her missing father.

Being a capable tool user (or so readers are told, anyway), young Merryn cobbles her sub together in jig time. Over the course of her undersea search, she bandages a wounded half-human merrow, destroys the glowing Deeplight that had lured many sailors to their dooms, finds her shipwrecked dad alive in a fortuitously placed diving bell, and is rescued from a huge, tentacled monster by the even larger mother of a baby sea serpent she had previously saved. These adventures would have been even more exciting had they actually been depicted in the illustrations—but, rare exceptions aside, Mora and Seabrook opt to focus instead on Merryn’s determined face, exotic seascapes, and “after” views rather than actual creative activity or moments of action. Back on land at last, father and daughter (both of whom are white) set about building a new boat that will, henceforth, carry them together.

Merryn’s role here is refreshingly active, but readers really have only the author’s word for it. (map) (Picture book. 6-8)

Pub Date: Oct. 4th, 2016
ISBN: 978-1-4549-2161-5
Page count: 40pp
Publisher: Sterling
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 15th, 2016


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